The office of mayor was abolished in July after a public referendum amended the municipal charter. Executive and administrative authority is now delegated to a council appointed Municipal Manager. The municipality is part of the Thirteenth Congressional District represented by Rep. Matt Bradford and Rep.
July 13, French onion soup is one of many French classics on the menu at the Bercy brasserie in Ardmore. After all, 10 years ago this weekend, chef Joe Monnich and Justin Weathers were part of the opening team for the Stephen Starr mega-brasserie that brought a vintage Parisian shimmer to Center City and became the defining restaurant of Rittenhouse Square.
So, naturellement, it was assumed that when Monnich and Weathers opened the Bercy in April inside the grandly rehabbed bones of the former Haverford Trust bank more recently, the space was Primavera KitchenArdmore would finally get its own steak-frites taste of Parc's buzzy Franco-glamour.
The steak-frites they certainly have delivered, with a choice of cuts from bistro bavette to deluxe the lightly dry-aged N. This menu that plays enthusiastically to the familiar French canon from the escargots to boeuf bourgignon.
And Monnich — a former lead chef at Parc and C. But from the moment I handed my keys to the valet complimentary — yay, suburbs! For one, with no outdoor seating, the Bercy is a self-contained universe that does not benefit from the lively streetscape and sidewalk views that inject Parc with priceless urban energy and allow it, in turn, to reciprocate with an elegant cafe glow that enhances the Square.
But the energy here is noticeably sedate, in part because the massive seat restaurant is divided into multiple levels and different zones that give it several distinct personalities: You're more likely to run into this posh older crowd at the White Dog Cafe in Wayne or Enoteca Tredici in Bryn Mawr than the hip breweries Tired Handsadventurous gastropub the Ripplewoodand international restaurants Maido!
And I wish the Bercy, in the spirit of a brasserie as a true reflection of its community, could find a way to tap a bit more into that youthful spirit.
So they know it when they see it. A crock of French onion is always a good place to start, but the frothy asparagus soup with a blooming cloud of Parmesan foam is where I'd head for lighter summer eating. Ripe, yellow tomatoes brought a farm-market touch to a flaky pastry crust layered with creamy sheep's milk ricotta, arugula pesto, and a sweet-tart balsamic drizzle.
A proper brasserie raw bar should have more than the two oysters choices the Bercy offered at my visit. But they were well shucked, with briny Wellfleets and the cucumber-melon delicacy of Washington state Capitals to pair with my crisp glass of sauvignon blanc from Ateliers Raspail in the Loire's Touraine.
Other raw bar delights — perfectly poached shrimp cocktail, sweet king crab legs, and cured yellowtail crudo with the novel touch of a curried aioli — were a fine way to start.
I would have loved the steak tartare had the filet mignon been minced a little finer and if the dressing had more mustard punch. And as much as I actually did like the escargots, the distracting addition of like-textured mushrooms to the little divots of bubbling green herb butter took away from the delicacy of what were some really excellent, tender snails.
They're served so hot, by the way, that I'm still not sure my singed taste buds have fully recovered. But the best part might have been the crusty loaf of "epi" bread a mini-baguette shaped like wheat sheaf served alongside for dipping.
It was one of several good breads that Monnich bakes in-house. A grilled fillet of branzino "loup de mer" over a piperade of ribboned roasted peppers offers an equally good but lighter Basque-country take on fish.
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The lobster Thermidor, meanwhile, was a fun retro indulgence of a butter-poached lobster that's split open and stuffed with crab, though the Newburg sauce was a tad drier than expected, and the side of Brussels sprouts was an odd choice as a summer garnish.
The rotisserie roasted duck was one dish that truly disappointed, a thick pad of unrendered fat still ringing its breast, whose meat was also threaded with a sinew. But the big and juicy burger more than compensated, its half-pound patty of lightly packed Creekstone beef topped with raclette — not unlike the burger that's also one of Parc's best-sellers.
The bananas Foster bread pudding was one satisfyingly rich exception. Add a glass of Sauternes, Armagnac or old Calvados for good measure, and that sounds like a nice send-off.
It can take a while to get it right, as Parc itself has shown. And the Bercy will need just that — some more time to evolve and refine an identity of its own to become the distinctive neighborhood brasserie that rising Ardmore deserves. July 13, - 5:Today's top 2 Paper Source jobs in Philadelphia, PA.
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